'She can't wait to give Kalvin Phillips a cuddle': Leeds United join appeal to find young Sarah Emmott a new kidney
Leeds United have joined an appeal to help urgently find a live kidney for six-year-old Sarah Emmott.
Sarah has been battling a rare disease called Congenital Nephrotic Syndrome and other complex health problems since she was born.
After spending much of her childhood on medication and in hospital, her best chance of survival is now a kidney transplant.
Leeds United are welcoming Sarah and her family back to Elland Road for the third time to try and help Emmott family find a live kidney donor .
Mum Ellie, 46, said: "Sarah was born in Leeds, we're from Leeds and we're big Leeds fans so the club's support fits perfectly.
"The fact that they have given us support is mind-blowing. It's unbelievable."
Ellie, who is also mum to huge Leeds fan Dane, 15, added: "She's only six so doesn't really understand but she's really looking forward to seeing Kalvin Phillips.
"He's been so supportive and always taken a shine to Sarah - plus he's my son and husband Andy's favourite player too.
"Sarah said she's really looking forward to giving him a cuddle and a kiss and hopefully they score some goals."
Brave Sarah will be the club's special guest of honour during the Boxing Day fixture against Preston.
Mum Ellie hopes that among the fans there will be one person who is the correct tissue match for Ellie.
She said: "Leeds has a huge fan base.
"I'm hoping that out of the 35,000 plus Leeds supporters and 2000 Preston fans that there's going to be someone out there who can help Sarah.
"There are lots of Leeds supporters so we are hoping they'll be someone who is fit, healthy and the right blood type who can be the right tissue donor.
She added: "Sarah is an extraordinary little girl, she gives so much back to everyone. She is always happy, singing songs and ever so loving.
"The pain she has had in her short life and she still smiles almost all of the time. She is infectious - extraordinary is what I call her. People who meet Sarah are almost spell-bound by her.
"She might be tiny but her personality is huge and she makes up for that."
Sarah needs a live kidney which means it must come from a living person who can donate one.
Her parents have been tested unfortunately they are not tissue matches.
If a live donor is not found, Sarah will be placed on the deceased donor list, while likely spending months on end in hospital dialysis.
Anyone who is willing to be tested as a kidney donor can find out more information by emailing [email protected] and referencing Sarah’s name.
You will automatically receive a reply email with further information on becoming a live donor along with a health questionnaire to complete.